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Tablets, What’s Your Poison?

by Maverick on October 8, 2011

The tablet personal computer or the tablet PC.  The full-size personal computer in a tablet form.  Microsoft popularized this form back in 2001 with Microsoft Tablet PC.  By now, a multitude of tablets have flooded the market after the boom that was iPad.  Now, after its successor has been released along with other companies cashing in on the trend, you might be asking yourself what would be the best tablet available today.  This comparison of Apple iPad 2 WiFi with 3G, Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 3G, Motorola XOOM MZ601 and the Blackberry 4G Playbook HSPA+ tablets, the who’s who of the mobile world, will give us an idea of who’s on top and who’s lagging behind.

Tablets Comparison Tablets, Whats Your Poison?

Form Factor, Who’s Sexy And Who’s Heavy?

What strikes the public most when a gadget is in site these days is size.  It may either be attributed to the thickness of the gadget or the way it is being held by human hands.  The thinnest, and I do mean thin, is the Galaxy Tab at a gorgeous 8.6mm.  This tablet, considering that, along with the XOOM, has the biggest display, is really thin even at its size.  However, in terms of holding it, the Playbook wins it as it is the lightest at only 425 grams, with a smaller display as compared to the first Tab that was released at only 7 inches.  The heaviest of the bunch is the Motorola XOOM at a whopping 730 grams.

And we all know that in today’s society, for gadgets, bigger is better.  And in this case, the Tab is the winner.

Display, Candy For Your Eyes

We all know that the display is one of the factors that can help in selling your product.  Not surprisingly, these tablets are putting out their best foot with displays that have an output of 16 million colors.  And again, with size matters rules (big, thin and light), the Tab and the XOOM comes out on top.  I may be a little biased with this as I prefer the displays of Samsung because I believe that they have always had the reputation of putting out great displays for their products.

Hardware, Muscle Power

The CPU in all the tablets are all Dual Core, 1 GHz, all ARM architectures.  But sadly, XOOM is the loser here as this one lags a bit as compared to the iPad2 and the Tab.  The RAM offered is a little disappointing on the iPad2 at only 512MB as compared to XOOM, Tab and Playbook’s 1GB RAM’s.  Also, as storage has been a problem from previous tablets, all these are now carrying 64GB internal Hard Disk Drivess.

As for the camera, which I think shouldn’t really be a factor as these are tablets, not cameras, the XOOM and the Blackberry Playbook have the 5 MP on their main cameras.  But for superiority, the Playbook has it over the others for the 1080p capability as compared to only the 720p of the others.  Each tablet already has a second camera, a front-facing one, which is really good as they are going to be essential for video calling.

As for all these tablets, wires are really deal breakers.  Aside from the chargers and some peripherals, all you need are WiFi capabilities, 3G usability and Bluetooth for all your other peripherals.  For connectivity, all these tablets have WiFi capabilities as well as the feature to use 3G networks using a SIM card.  Although the mark goes down for the iPad2 as it is the only one requiring a micro SIM, which for me, is already a hassle as you just can’t pop in any SIM card that you want.  The XOOM and the Tab are better though as they can be used as WiFi hotspots that can allow you to share your 3G internet connection to a group of people inside the room.  Bluetooth is also on-board on all models.  GPRS and EDGE are all standard now on all these tablets.  Also, only the Playbook doesn’t have a GPS on board, which is kind of disappointing because the tablets would really be great replacements for the GPS that we use in our cars.

Software, The Life Blood

With two of the tablets running on the latest Android OS v3.1,  XOOM and Tab are what you can have if you want something close to open source goodness with the Android’s Linux heritage.  The Playbook is loaded with the Blackberry Tablet OS, which is the latest operating system made specifically by RIM for the Playbook.  And last but certainly not the least, as it has always been, Apple has been a maker of really good operating systems barring only a few disastrous updates, and iOS 4 is really stable and very smooth running on the on-board hardware.

And, as tablets are really personal computers, most people will be using it for browsing the web.  This is where the iPad2 really disappoints, it doesn’t have Flash support in the web browser.  Sure, you can download an application as a replacement, but the default browser should be enough like what the XOOM, Tab and Playbook have.

Final Words

After all the specifications we’ve covered, almost everything is the same except for the size of the Playbook which is more or less the same as the 7-inch Galaxy Tab released earlier.  The question is, what do you prefer and what are your parameters?  If you rather go for the beauty of the gadget, certainly, iPad2 will be up on your list.  The Playbook’s OS simply isn’t just ready yet to be judged.  The Tab and XOOM on the other hand are on Android with the latest version as well as capable of being upgraded to the later, newer version.  Maybe you would be judging with the price?  The smallest form-factor would generally be the cheaper but, with RIM, you will still be using BIS (Blackberry Internet Service) for your applications and updates and this will add monthly charges which eventually add up.

Apple’s iPad2, Motorola XOOM, Samsung Galaxy Tab and Blackberry Playbook are the tablets to beat this generation.  So, pick your poison.

For Further Reading:

  1. Tablet Comparison: Get The Best Tablet
  2. Laptop vs Netbook vs Tablets: What’s the difference among them?
  3. Top 10 Low Cost Tablets in India
  4. Parliamentarians Goes Hi-tech; Our Taxes Buy Them Tablets
  5. Amazon Unveils Tablet At Surprisingly Undercut Price
  6. Top Alternatives To Kindle Fire
  7. Top 5 Android Honeycomb Tablets

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